Ranking the top prospects who changed hands at the MLB trade deadline:
1. C.J. Abrams, SS, Nationals: The crown jewel in the six-player haul the Nationals got from the Padres for Juan Soto and Josh Bell, Abrams has shown flashes in the majors this season but has struggled overall (.605 OPS, 2 HR, 1 SB in 139 PA). The production he had in a 30-game stint in Triple-A is more like what Nats fans are hoping for – .314/.364/.507 with 7 HR, 10 SB in 151 PA. Still just 21until the third-to-last day of the regular season, Abrams has elite hit and speed tools to go with big power upside which could see him become a monster in fantasy. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 2.
2. Noelvi Marte, SS, Reds: The headliner in the four-prospect package the Reds reeled in from the Mariners for Luis Castillo. Marte rode a hot July (1.164 OPS, 7 HR, 5 SB) back up the prospect rankings after a slow start (.711 OPS entering July) and talk that the 20-year-old Dominican shortstop was out of shape conspired to cause a drop in his perceived value. There’s still a potential middle-of-the-order bat with some speed here and now that he has Great American Ballpark to look forward to, fantasy owners are dreaming of big things again. Note: he hit 2 homers in his second game in the Reds organization on Wednesday in High-A. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 12.
3. Robert Hassell III, OF, Nationals: The co-star of the treasure trove of talent the Nationals got for Juan Soto and Josh Bell, Hassell features a 60-grade hit tool that has him with a combined .301.387/.469 with 21 HR and 54 SB over his first two minor league seasons.There are questions about how much power Hassell will grow into, being a slender 195 pounds on a 6-foot-2 frame, but there looks to be a .300 hitter with teens-homer power and 20+ steals in the near future. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 13.
4. Esteury Ruiz, OF, Brewers: One of the biggest breakout minor league starts of 2021, Ruiz slahsed (combined 1.027 OPS at AA/AAA) and burned (combined 60 steals) his way up fantasy prospect rankings until cooling off amid limited playing time upon arriving in San Diego (.555 OPS, 1 SB in 14 games). The Padres cashed in on the 23-year-old outfielder’s increased value to include him in a package for elite closer Josh Hader from the Brewers. Now Ruiz will look to earn enough playing time in Milwaukee to put that 70-grade speed to use. Note: he was 2-for-3 but 0-for-2 on SB attempts in his Brewers debut at Triple-A on Wednesday. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 47.
5. Edwin Arroyo, SS, Reds: Another of this year’s biggest breakouts in the minors, Arroyo has shown superstar upside with an .887 OPS, 13 HR, 23 SB in 89 games at Low-A as an 18-year-old. The Mariners included their 2021 second-round draft pick out of Puerto Rico in the four-prospect package for Luis Castillo from the Reds. Arroyo joins a Cincinnati organization with an embarrassment of riches at shortstop, but will have a couple years for things to shake themselves out ahead of him to see if he’ll be able to stick there for the Reds. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 54.
6. James Wood, OF, Nationals: The prospect the Nationals got from the Padres in the Juan Soto who may come to most closely resemble Soto is Wood, a 6-foot-7, 240-pound outfielder with power, patience and a quickly-developing hit tool. As a 19-year-old at Low-A this season, Wood has put up an awesome triple-slash of .337/.453/.601 with 10 HR and 15 SB. Despite having a huge strike zone for pitchers to work in, Wood has shown an extraordinary eye with a 19.1 BB% for Lake Elsinore. If he keeps this up, Wood could skyrocket to the top 10 overall prospects in no time. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 62.
7. Ken Waldichuk, LHP, Athletics: The A’s got back 60 percent of a future starting rotation for Frankie Montas and Lou Trivino from the Yankees, headlined by Waldichuk. The 24-year-old lefty has been racking up strikeouts this season over two levels with a 14.4 K/9 at Double-A and a 13.2 at Triple-A to go with a combined ERA of 2.71. It shouldn’t be long before Waldichuck is toeing the rubber in Oakland, which may boost his ranking in next week’s update due to pitching half his games in the cavernous Oakland Coliseum. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 98.
8. Logan O’Hoppe, C, Angels: In one of the more unusual trades at the deadline, the re-tooling Angels sent 24-year-old outfielder Brandon Marsh to the Phillies for O’Hoppe, an offensive-minded catcher with power, patience and a dash of speed. The 22-year-old backstop demonstrated excellent plate discipline at Double-A this season with a 13.0 BB% and a 16.5 K% to got with a .888 OPS, 15 HR and 6 SB. O’Hoppe becomes the catcher-of-the-very-near-future for the Angels, who have Max Stassi finishing the first season of a three-year contract with a thud (.639 OPS). RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 116.
9. Samad Taylor, 2B, Royals: One of last season’s biggest breakouts (.888 OPS, 16 HR, 30 SB in 87 games at Double-A), Taylor has taken a step back while still proving fantasy-friendly numbers in Triple-A (.763 OPS, 9 HR, 23 SB in 70 games). Heading from Toronto to Kansas City in the Whit Merrifield trade, Taylor should be able to get more of an opportunity in the Royals’ rebuild. At 24 years old, Taylor should get a chance late this season to battle Michael Massey as the heir apparent to Merrifield at second base in K.C. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 133.
10. Spencer Steer, 2B/3B, Reds: The headliner in the Twins’ acquisition of Tyler Mahle, Steer is close to getting a shot in Cincinnati as a power-hitting infielder with patience at Triple-A. Since earning a promotion from Double-A (.976 OPS, 8 HR in 35 games), Steer has crushed 12 HR in 48 games at AAA with excellent plate discipline – 12.1 BB% and 18.5 K%. With 34-year-old Donovan Solano manning third base in Cincinnati, the Reds will want to get a look at Steer to see if he can take hold of the job at the hot corner heading into 2023. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 139.
11. Victor Acosta, SS, Reds: The Padres continued clearing out their farm system by dealing Acosta, an 18-year-old shortstop who was one of the top international signings in 2021, to the Reds for Brandon Drury. Acosta was scintilating in his pro debut in the Domincan Summer League last year, putting up a .915 OPS with 5 HR and 26 SB in 56 games. He has slowed down some this year with a promotion to the Arizona Complex League, where he has a .706 OPS with 2 HR and 5 steals on 12 attempts. A switch-hitting shortstop with power and speed, Acosta will settle in at the back end of the Reds’ shortstop-palooza with an ETA of 2025. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 147.
12. Drew Waters, OF, Royals: In a perfect example of how sometimes all a player needs is a change of scenery, Waters came to the Royals from the Braves for a competitive balance pick on July 11 and has promptly turned on the after-burners. Waters looked like an elite prospect while rocketing from going in the second round of the 2017 draft out of high school to Triple-A by 2019. Then came the lost pandemic season of 2020 and a struggle in Triple-A in 2021 (.710 OPS, 11 HR, 28 SB) and 2022 (.698 OPS, 5 HR, 5 SB) before the trade, when Waters turned it on by putting up a 1.099 OPS with 5 HR and 9 SB in 17 games. Now Waters is back on track to be a tablesetter with plenty of speed and some pop in the very near future. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 150.
13. Luis Medina, RHP, Athletics: Blessed with some of the nastiest stuff in the minors, Medina brings his 100-mph fastball and 60-grade curve to the A’s in the four-prospect package for Frankie Montas and Lou Trivino. Medina is still walking too many (5.0 BB/9), but after posting a 3.67 ERA in 15 games at Double-A to end last season and a 3.38 ERA in 17 games at the same level this year, he’s ready to finish his development at Triple-A. There is plenty of risk that Medina winds up a high-leverage reliever with a chance to be an elite closer, but he also could evolve into a front-line starter. The move to Oakland is a favorable one for pitchers, so expect to see him rise in next week’s rankings update. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 153.
14. Christian Encarnacion-Strand, 3B, Reds: After being just a fourth-round pick out of Oklahoma State in 2021, Encarnacion-Strand has burned through the minors to the tune of a combined .993 OPS with 29 HR, and 10 SB in 109 games over three levels. It was enough for the Twins to package him with Steer to the Reds for Tyler Mahle. CES has been at his best in 13 games after a promotion to Double-A – 1.085 OPS, 5 HR, 1 SB and could soon be competing with Steer for the starting job at the hot corner in Cincinnati. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 187.
15. Clayton Beeter, RHP, Yankees: The Dodgers bought low on a struggling Joey Gallo by sending Beeter, a hard-throwing Double-A right-hander, to the Yankees. Beeter has flashed big-time stuff with a huge strikeout rate (15.3 K/9 in AA), but control problems (6.1 BB/9) have held him back and could lead to a future in the back of a bullpen. The 6-foot-2, 220-pounder was a reliever at Texas Tech before breaking out as a starter in 2021, leading to being taken in the second round of the 2020 draft. The Yankees may continue giving Beeter a chance to start or could move him to the bullpen now to see if he could help in New York by the end of this season. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 233.
16. Jarlin Susana, RHP, Nationals: The best pitcher in the 2022 international signing period was Susana and he hasn’t disappointed in his debut at the Arizona Complex League, dominating with a 97-102 mph fastball and a hammer slider in 87-94 mph range. A 6-foot-6, 235-pound beast, he was the perfect lottery tickets for the Nationals to get from the Padres at the back of the six-player package for Juan Soto and Josh Bell. Susana already looks ready for Low-A as an 18-year-old with a 2.45 ERA and 44-11 K-BB in 29.1 innings in rookie ball. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 254.
17. Alex De Jesus, SS, Blue Jays: In one of the stranger deals of the deadline, De Jesus was packaged with Mitch White, who had made 10 starts for the Dodgers this season, for two lesser-know pitching prospects in RHP Nick Frasso and LHP Moises Brito. De Jesus has excellent power (11 HR between Low-/High-A this season), draws walks (14 BB% in minor league career) and is a 20-year-old shortstoop already in High-A. There’s no speed and strikeout concerns (29.6 K% in minors), so a comp would be Paul DeJong. With Bo Bichette and Matt Chapman in front of him at SS and 3B, De Jesus’ future may wind up as a 2B or a utilityman. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 260.
18. Seth Johnson, RHP, Orioles: Johnson needs Tommy John surgery but was included in a three-team deal that is mouthful – the Orioles get Johnson and Chayce McDermottt, the Astros get Trey Mancini and Jayden Murray, and the Rays get Jose Siri. Johnson was a competitive balance pick in 2019 by the Rays out of Campbell and had impressed on his way to High-A with a combined 2.81 ERA, 172-47 K-BB in 137.2 innings over four levels. He has a plus fastball-slider combo, but we’ll now have to wait until 2024 to see him restart his career. The Orioles are suddenly doing a pretty good job developing pitchers and have a pitcher’s park now that they expanded left field, so we could see Johnson as a rotation option in Baltimore as early as 2025. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 281.
19. Jordan Groshans, SS, Marlins: The Blue Jays managed to get two veteran relievers in Anthony Bass and Zach Pop from the Marlins for a prospect on the decline in Groshans, who has just 1 HR in 263 AB this season in Triple-A. Groshans was the 12th overall pick in 2018 and reached Double-A as a 21-year-old last year and put up an .817 OPS in 75 games there. There is supposed to be 50-grade power, but Groshans has just a ..293 SLG and now has power-sapping LoanDepot Park in his future. This at least gets the Marlins a much-needed hitting prospect for their offensively-challenged system, but fantasy owners shouldn’t be too excited about maybe the next Miguel Rojas. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 285.
20. Hayden Wesneski, RHP, Cubs: The Cubs scored a pretty solid Triple-A pitching prospect in Wesneski from the Yankees for reliever Scott Effross. Wesneski has two 60-grade pitches in a mid-90s fastball and a tight, sweeping slider. Wesneski has been solid at Triple-A this season with a 3.51 ERA and 1.15 WHIP, but he’s on the ho-hum side in strikeouts with just a 8.3 K/9. The Cubs will likely give Wesneski a shot to establish himself in the Chicago rotation down the stretch, so he could quickly become a solid-not-spectacular SP in fantasy. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 287.
21. Antoine Kelly, LHP, Rangers: The Rangers did great by turning 36-year-old reliever Matt Bush into a 6-foot-5 22-year-old lefty with a devastating fastball-slider combo, albeit with 40-grade command. Kelly has battled injuries and wildness on his way to a breakout season at High-A this season, posting a 3.86 ERA with 11.8 K/9 but 5.1 BB/9. Kelly had surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome in late 2020, so it’s already impressive that he’s made it this far back. There is risk that he winds up a reliever, but there’s plenty of upside for Kelly to wind up as a mid-rotation starter. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 291.
22. Jay Groome, LHP, Padres: Once the top high school pitcher in the 2016 MLB draft when the Red Sox took the 6-foot-6 lefty 12th overall, it’s been a long and winding road for Groome to Triple-A and now to the Padres for Eric Hosmer and two speedy outfield prospects (Max Ferguson and Corey Rosier). Along the way have been injuries – including Tommy John surgery in 2018 – and inconsistent results, but Groome is still just 23 and has picked up steam in the upper levels of the minors. Groome has taken a step back as a strikeout pitcher this year (9.3 K/9) after getting plenty of Ks last season (12.4 K/9). With four average pitches, Groome gives the Padres a back-of-the-rotation option in the very near future, as he has a 3.94 ERA over three starts at Triple-A. Groome may also wind up as a bullpen piece in the mold of Drew Pomeranz, so there’s limited upside in fantasy despite the move to a much better ballpark in San Diego. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 300.
23. Max Castillo, RHP, Royals: Castillo was a pop-up prospect this year, going from a 4.85 ERA at Double-A last season to a 3.10 at AA this season, followed by a 0.66 ERA in 5 games at Triple-A, then a 3.05 ERA in 9 games for the Blue Jays. Castillo had a combined 0.98 WHIP in the minors and backed it up with a 0.97 WHIP for Toronto, but was packaged with Samad Taylor to the Royals for Whit Merrifield. A hulking 6-foot-2 and 256 pounds, Castillo’s fastball averages just 93.4 mph, but he has two plus pitches in his fastball and changeup to go with plus command. Castillo should get a shot in the Royals rotation down the stretch and could make his case to be a mid-rotation starter going forward. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 357.
24. T.J. Sikkema, LHP, Royals: In the mold of Nestor Cortes, Sikkema is a shorter lefty (6-foot) with a deep and varied arsenal that includes deception with a mix of arm angles. Not wanting to have two pitchers with the same look in their rotation, the Yankees packaged Sikkema with two other pitching prospects (Beck Way and Chandler Champlain) to the Royals for Andrew Benintendi. Sikkema was a competitive balance pick in 2019 out of Missouri, but missed 2021 after having Tommy John surgery. Having not pitched in the minors since a four-start debut in 2019, Sikkema was dynamite in High-A this season with a 2.48 ERA and 54-9 K-BB in 36.1 IP. The Royals immediately promoted Sikkema to Double-A, where he debuted with 4.1 innings on Wednesday, allowing two runs with four strikeouts. Sikkema could be an option in the Royals rotation by next season and is someone to watch if he can keep up his tremendous 6.5 K/BB career minor league rate. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 362.
25. Malcom Nunez, 3B, Pirates: The Cardinals dealt from their glut of DH-types by sending Nunez along with RHP Johan Oviedo to the Pirates for pitchers Jose Quintana and Chris Stratton. A stocky 5-foot-11, 205 pounds, Nunez is a bat-first third baseman who would be best suited as a DH. As a 21-year-old in Double-A, he has shown the power needed to make it there with 17 HR with excellent plate discipline (13.7 BB% and 20.3 K%). Nunez joins an absolutely loaded Pirates system, where he will have to hit his way to the majors, but that could make him an undervalued fantasy asset if he can mash his way to the middle of the lineup in Pittsburgh. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 404.
26. Enmanuel Valdez, 2B/3B, Red Sox: Valdez came out of nowhere to hit 26 homers last season between High-A and Double-A and has taken it to a new level this year with a combined 1.018 OPS, 22 HR and 5 SB between Double- and Triple-A. It was enough for the Red Sox to send Christian Vazquez to the Astros for Valdez and OF Wilyer Abreu. Valdez has played mostly 2B and 3B in his career, but has added outfield to his resume with 14 games there this season. At just 5-foot-9 but a solid 191 pounds, Valdez could become the sparkplug in Boston that Enrique Hernandez was last year before bombling out in the final season of his contract this year. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 405.
27. Levi Stoudt, RHP, Reds: Stoudt was a prospect on the rise coming off a breakout 2021 that saw the 6-foot-1 righty reach Double-A in hif first pro season, but the struggled to a 5.28 ERA in AA this year. The Mariners then included him in a four-player package to the Reds for Luis Castillo. Stoudt made a strong debut for the Reds with 5 scoreless innings on Wednesday. He had Tommy John surgery in 2019 shortly after being drafted in the third round out of Lehigh and he added a couple ticks to his fastball after returning. As one might expect for a hurler coming off TJ, Stoudt is showing gains in control this season with a 2.2 BB/9 after 4.1 last year. With a plus fastball-slider combo, Stoudt has a mid-rotatition ceiling, but moving to Great American Ballpark could see a drop in our rankings update next week. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 406.
28. Robert Gasser, RHP, Brewers: Gasser was a competitive balance pick by the Padres out of Houston in 2021 and has been showing a lot to like in his first full minor league season with a 11.5 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9 in High-A. A 6-foot-1 lefty with a plus fastball/slider combo, Gasser was part of the four-player package the Pdres sent to the Brewers for Josh Hader. Gasser also has plus control, but profiles more as a back-of-the-rotation starter and is heading to a worse ballpark. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 443.
29. Tucker Davidson, LHP, Angels: Davidson looked to be breaking out last year when he started the season with a 1.17 ERA over four Triple-A starts and followed it up with a 3.60 ERA in four starts for the Braves before a forearm injury sidelined him for the rest of the regular season. He was able to return to start Game 5 of the World Series, but Davidson has fallen back this season with a 4.59 ERA in Triple-A and a 6.46 innings for Braves. Atlanta packaged him with Jesse Chavez to acquire Raisel Iglesias from the Angels. Davidson has posted solid ratios (10.8 K/9, 2.7 BB/9) this season, so he could be sneaky good once he gets in the Angels’ rotation. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 450.
30. Jayden Murray, RHP, Astros: A 23rd-round draft pick out of Dixie State in 2019, Murray has cruised ever since in the minors with a a career 2.61 ERA, 9.0 K/9, 1.1 BB/9. The Astros acquired Murray with Trey Mancini from the Orioles in a three-team deal, giving up Jose Siri and a pitching prospect (Chayce McDermottt). Murray has a 2.83 ERA this season in Double-A, having briefly gone up to Triple-A for a 5-run drubbing (but still had 8 Ks in 4.1 IP). With 60-grade command and a solid fastball/slider combo, Murray has a good shot to be a serviceable back-end starter, although leaving Tampa Bay for Houston is a negative move ballpark-wise. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 451.
31. Beck Way, RHP, Royals: Way has made strides this season by reducing his walk rate from 5.4 to 3.2 BB/9 while posting a 3.73 ERA in High-A before the Yankees sent him to the Royals in a three-prospect package for Andrew Benintendi. The 6-foot-4, 200-pound righty was hit hard in his first start in the Royals’ organization, giving up 5 ER in 4.2 IP on Tuesday. Way has a mid-90s fastball to go with improving secondary pitches that have a chance to be plus in a slider and a changeup. The move to Kansas City is a good one for the ballpark and more opportunites, so Way has a chance to emerge as a mid-rotation starter by 2024. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 464.
32. Ben Brown, RHP, Cubs: One of the big pop-up prospects of 2022, Brown has gone from a 33rd-round draft pick by the Phillies in 2017 to Tommy John surgery in 2019 to a breakout in 2022 in High-A. Brown has a 3.08 ERA with 105-23 K-BB in 73 innings with four double-digit strikeout games in his past nine games. The Phillies used Brown’s breakout to get David Robertson from the Cubs for their closer-starved bullpen. A 6-foot-6, 210-pound righty, Brown came back from TJ with added velocity, sitting in the mid-90s along with a slider and a curve that both flash plus potential. There’s some reliever risk, but Brown could wind up a mid-rotation starter who plays up in fantasy with big strikeouts. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 467.
33. Max Ferguson, 2B/SS, Red Sox: The Red Sox must have wanted speed as they got Padres to package Ferguson and Corey Rosier with Eric Hosmer for Jay Groome. Ferguson was a 5th-rounder in the 2021 draft out of Tennessee who’s piled up 70 steals with an 18.3 BB% in his first 128 minor league games. He’s shown a little pop this season with 6 HR between Low- and High-A, but has seen his average slip from .247 for Lake Elsinore to .162 for Fort Wayne. Ferguson has a ceiling as a speedy table-setter who could post big steals totals, something like Myles Straw, but he’s got a ways to go to develop enough of a hit tool. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 483.
34. Corey Rosier, OF, Red Sox: Rosier is much like Ferguson, but from the outfield. He was a 12th-rounder out of UNC-Greensboro in 2021 by the Mariners and has already been dealt twice – first to the Padres in the Adam Frazier deal in November, then in the Eric Hosmer trade on Tuesday. Rosier has good plate discipline with a 14.0 BB% and 17.5 K% so far in the minors with 46 steals. He has shown a little pop with 6 HR this season to go with a .263 average. Another possible table-setter with speed, it’s more likely Rosier winds up a fourth outfielder with fantasy value in AL-only leagues. RotoProspects Top 500 Prospect Ranking: 485.